eBay to Pay $413 Million for Gmarket Control, Not a Done Deal
By Ina Steiner
A deal that would give eBay a controlling stake in South Korean marketplace Gmarket is not yet finalized. Reuters reported that eBay had agreed to pay $413 million for a 34.2 percent stake in Gmarket from its current top shareholder Interpark, citing news source eDaily. BusinessWeek reported that eBay CEO had visited South Korea last week to discuss the deal.
But Interpark issued a regulatory filing after the reports surfaced to say it had not completed an official contract to sell its stake in Gmarket to eBay, according to the Wall Street Journal.
eBay has been in talks to purchase Interpark's stake in Gmarket since last summer. Cowen and Company analyst Jim Friedland issued a report at the time, writing, "We do not think that eBay is interested buying the entire company given its poor track record in operating wholly owned assets in Asia. However, we think it signals that eBay believes market share losses and margin declines at Internet Auction (eBay Korea) are irreversible and that the company is considering alternative strategies to benefit from Korean e-commerce growth."
About the author:
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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